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Author Topic: Wait for July 1 or Go For It Now?  (Read 9455 times)
W3ULS
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Posts: 69




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« on: April 15, 2012, 01:48:03 PM »

I'm intent on obtaining an Extra Class License this year.

Question: Since the current question pool expires on June 30, is there any advantage in waiting until after July 1 to take the test with the new question pool? One advantage I can see is that the ARRL instruction package for the new pool is way more sophisticated than what it offered for the current one. But as to content, is there much to choose between the two?

73,

John, W3ULS
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KB3LSR
Member

Posts: 297




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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2012, 02:29:36 PM »

Why not give it a shot now? What's the worst that can happen (besides losing $15)?

I was in the same situation when upgrading to Extra - to wait for the new question pool or take it now (the current question pool was the "new" one back then). I was motivated because I had a deadline: instead of "when I get around to studying and upgrading" I went to "well, I don't want to purchase a new book for $20, so I'll spend $15 on the exam for the current book I already have."

I'll never forget when the VE came back after grading the exam (I was at a hamfest and there was a lot going on) and said, "so how do you think you did?" I looked at him and said "well, it doesn't matter how I think I did - it matters how you think I did." He laughed, shook my hand and told me I should get used to signing /AE until the ULS is updated.

If you have the book, and set aside some time every night to do some practice questions and reading you should be able to do just fine before June.
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AD6KA
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Posts: 2232




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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2012, 02:58:06 PM »

Quote
is there any advantage in waiting until after July 1 to take the test with the new question pool?

That depends whether you actually studied the material,
.....or memorized the Question Pool.

Quote
But as to content, is there much to choose between the two?

Well. I haven't had to study a Ham question pool in
25+ years, but I seriously doubt it.

Remember that in "multiple guess" exams, at least one, and
often two, of the answers are absurdly and obviously wrong.
(To anyone who has studied the material, that is!)

ID those answers right out of the gate, then concentrate
on the answers for the "real"questions.

Ken,  AD6KA
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W3ULS
Member

Posts: 69




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« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2012, 11:55:24 AM »

I understand only about 5% of the questions have been changed in the new pool. In other words, very little difference.
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K2OWK
Member

Posts: 1030




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« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2012, 02:49:02 PM »

Watch out for the questions about the ERP on the 60 meter band. If you use the new 100watt ERP it will be marked wrong. I am taking the test in May and hope to pass before the new question pool comes out.

73s

K2OWK
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W9IQ
Member

Posts: 102




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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2012, 10:53:03 AM »

Hello John,

I agree with the other replies that if you are ready to take the test, go ahead and take it now. Your only exposure is the cost for the test and even if you don't pass the first time, your learning experience and nerve relaxation will make it worth the effort.

Barry's comment about answering questions in the context of the old exam is a very good point. I remember taking my Novice exam just when the FCC removed the restriction that Novice operators could only use crystals on HF - no VFOs prior to that. The test was still based on the old crystal only rules even though VFOs were then technically permitted. That memory was certainly in the dusty corners until reading Barry's advice.

Good luck with the exam!

- Glenn DJ0IQ and W9IQ



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KD4EBL
Member

Posts: 71




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« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2012, 01:03:38 PM »

My understanding is those questions were dropped for tests administered after the change to the rules.

Watch out for the questions about the ERP on the 60 meter band. If you use the new 100watt ERP it will be marked wrong. I am taking the test in May and hope to pass before the new question pool comes out.

73s

K2OWK

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K2OWK
Member

Posts: 1030




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« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2012, 09:00:25 PM »

Thanks KD4EBL, The VE's in my club said the same thing.

73s

K2OWK
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N7VEA
Member

Posts: 48




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« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2012, 05:31:06 PM »

I took the Extra exam yesterday at the Idaho Ham Convention and passed it.  Have been working through the book about an hour a day for the past month, and the past two weeks have been doing one or two practice exams each day.  The past week I was averaging better than 45/50 each time so I went ahead and went over to the test session at the convention.

What's the worst that can happen if you don't pass before the new set of questions comes out?  Yes, you'll drop $15... but you'll have to buy another book and practice disk too, hihi. 

Good luck!
73, Bill N7VEA (keeping my original call for now)
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KG6YV
Member

Posts: 504




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« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2012, 04:13:56 PM »

I wouldn't rely on any ARRL sturdy guide, I would go to HamTEst Online, sign up, spend an hour or two a day for two
weeks and take the test before July1st.  You can read reviews of HamTest Online here on Eham under software.
I ran thru HamTest for two weeks took my test and got a perfect score. 

Greg
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NW0LF
Member

Posts: 18




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« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2012, 01:33:50 PM »

As a VE liaison, I would tell you to go ahead and take the test.  Why wait?  If you think you are ready then go for it.  If nothing else, you'll get to see a test and get an idea what it is all about.  Good luck, John.

Wolfie, K9WLF
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WI4P
Member

Posts: 41




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« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2012, 08:00:07 AM »

I wouldn't rely on any ARRL sturdy guide, I would go to HamTEst Online, sign up, spend an hour or two a day for two
weeks and take the test before July1st.  You can read reviews of HamTest Online here on Eham under software.
I ran thru HamTest for two weeks took my test and got a perfect score. 

Greg
I agree with KG6YV.  Ham test online is the way to go and there is no better time than now!!
John
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W5LZ
Member

Posts: 477




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« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2012, 05:48:57 PM »

Take the test when you are ready.  If that's before the dead line, then good.  If it means retaking the test after the dead line, then do that too.  It isn't a catastrophe having to take the test more than once, there were a lot of us who did.  There are just too many sources for the required information, it isn't that hard to find.
Good luck.
 - 'Doc
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